Dr. David Swann presents Alberta Culture and Tourism grant cheques to successful applicants in Calgary Mountain View

Calgary, AB (March 30, 2016): On March 24th, Dr. David Swann had the pleasure of presenting the cheques for Alberta Culture and Tourism grants to deserving organizations in his Calgary Mountain View constituency.

“It is a great joy to be able to present these kinds of grants,” said Swann. “The organizations who receive them do amazing things for our communities.”

“These two recipients are a perfect example of the diversity government grants make possible.” Swann continued. “One is a community service organization helping those in need and the other hosted a fantastic event that drew together not just the community, but the whole province.”

Swann stopped first at Norfolk Housing Association, an organization that provides affordable housing in Hillhurst-Sunnyside areas of Calgary. There, he delivered a $35,000.00 cheque to aid in the renovation of the Association’s community infrastructure.

“This investment in community infrastructure is critical to building inclusive, accessible and collaborative community spaces,” Executive Director Maya Kambeitz says. “The revitalization made possible by this grant will provide opportunities for community members to convene critical conversations and collaborations to address some of the most pressing social challenges Albertan’s face.”

Swann’s next destination was the North Hill Community Curling Club who hosted the 2016 Alberta Provincial Championships in January. This event brought the community out and launched the run of eventual Canadian Champions, Team Carey. The grant for North Hill was in the amount of $41,250.00, aiding in the costs of hosting this prestigious event.

“We understand that during these times of financial stress on the Provincial budget, the funding of events of this nature can be difficult,” said tournament chair, Darrell Demick. “We really do appreciate the effort and funding provided by the Government of Alberta.”

“Both these groups are a credit to their community and are deserved recipients of the Culture Grants,” Swann concluded. “I really encourage more organizations to apply.”


Swann deeply saddened by the passing of MP Jim Hillyer

Calgary, AB (March 23, 2016): Dr. David Swann is deeply saddened by the passing of Member of Parliament, Jim Hillyer.

“Jim served his riding with honour and dedication,” Swann said. “I’m saddened by his sudden passing and my prayers go out to his family and loved ones.”


Statement from Dr. David Swann on the tragic bombings in Brussels

Edmonton, AB (March 22, 2016): The events unfolding in Brussels today are tragic and horrifying. My thoughts and prayers go out to the victims, the victims’ families and all those whose lives will never be the same for having been witness to these terrible acts.

Terrorism strikes at the heart of our humanity, making us afraid of the unfamiliar and separating us from one another. It is my deepest hope that this intent will backfire and such heinous acts will, instead, unite us in opposition against those who would use murder as a political tool.


Swann says report from Alberta Child and Youth Advocate further reason to reform Mental Health and Addictions services

Edmonton, AB (March 21, 2016): The latest report from Alberta’s Child and Youth Advocate highlights the needs for systemic reform in how mental health and addictions are treated, says Dr. David Swann. The report was instigated when a 10-month old baby, known as Lily, drowned in a container of home-made alcohol.

“Alberta must reform the way we treat mental health and addictions,” Swann said. “Otherwise, preventable tragedies like Lily’s death will continue to occur. ”

The Advocate’s report recommends creating a safe environment for children exposed to parental addictions. Specifically, greater resources for front-line workers so they can create effective support networks, such as extended family. It also recommends that government ensures these support networks have the knowledge required to intervene when a child’s welfare is in danger.

Swann, co-author of the Alberta Mental Health and Addictions Review released in February, agrees with the Child and Youth Advocate.

“The evidence is clear that community supports, prevention and early intervention have a huge impact on saving lives,” Swann said. “Mental health and addiction issues don’t just impact the sufferers directly, the damage done to families and communities is immense. We simply have to change the way these problems are dealt with.”


Appointments to ABCs should follow an independent process says Dr. David Swann

Edmonton, AB (March 21, 2016): Dr. David Swann is calling on the NDP government to go one step further in their review of Agencies, Boards and Commissions and make the appointment process independent of government.

“For years these important positions were given out as political favours and the government appear to be going down the same path,” says Swann. “We’ve already seen several appointments from this government go to NDP insiders.”

From Health Services to Gaming and Liquor to Human Rights, Alberta’s Agencies, Boards and Commissions allocate most of the funds in the provincial budget. Swann is recommending ABC appointments are done either by an arm’s-length independent committee or through a non-partisan, transparent process.

“The ABCs provide oversight and direction for many of Alberta’s most important services, we need to ensure the best qualified people are chosen,” Swann continued. “The temptation for any government to appoint their own supporters to these positions is overwhelming and can only be curbed by using an independent selection process.”


Statement from Dr. David Swann on International Day for Elimination of Racial Discrimination

Edmonton, AB (March 21, 2016): In 1966, the General Assembly of the United Nations formally reaffirmed that “racial discrimination and apartheid are denials of human rights and fundamental freedoms and of justice are offences against human dignity”.

Though the declaration was primarily aimed at a now dead regime, a mere glance at today’s news tells us the words ring as true today as they did 50 years ago.

“We must constantly strive against racial discrimination,” says Swann. “Alberta is a thriving melting pot of people, culture and religion – a mix which brings new ideas, new ways of thinking and new opportunities. We all benefit from this diversity.”


Statement from Dr. David Swann on International Day for Elimination of Racial Discrimination

Edmonton, AB (March 21, 2016): In 1966, the General Assembly of the United Nations formally reaffirmed that “racial discrimination and apartheid are denials of human rights and fundamental freedoms and of justice are offences against human dignity”.

Though the declaration was primarily aimed at a now dead regime, a mere glance at today’s news tells us the words ring as true today as they did 50 years ago.

“We must constantly strive against racial discrimination,” says Swann. “Alberta is a thriving melting pot of people, culture and religion – a mix which brings new ideas, new ways of thinking and new opportunities. We all benefit from this diversity.”


Appointments to ABCs should follow an independent process says Dr. David Swann

Edmonton, AB (March 21, 2016): Dr. David Swann is calling on the NDP government to go one step further in their review of Agencies, Boards and Commissions and make the appointment process independent of government.

“For years these important positions were given out as political favours and this government appears to be going down the same path,” says Swann. “We’ve already seen several appointments from this government go to  insiders.”

From Health Services to Gaming and Liquor to Human Rights, Alberta’s Agencies, Boards and Commissions allocate most of the funds in the provincial budget. Swann is recommending ABC appointments are done either by an arm’s-length independent committee or through a non-partisan, transparent process.

“The ABCs provide oversight and direction for many of Alberta’s most important services, we need to ensure the best qualified people are chosen,” Swann continued. “The temptation for any government to appoint their own supporters to these positions is overwhelming and can only be curbed by using an independent selection process.”


Swann says report from Alberta Child and Youth Advocate further reason to reform Mental Health and Addictions services

Edmonton, AB (March 21, 2016): The latest report from Alberta’s Child and Youth Advocate highlights the needs for systemic reform in how mental health and addictions are treated, says Dr. David Swann. The report was instigated when a 10-month old baby, known as Lily, drowned in a container of home-made alcohol.

“Alberta must reform the way we treat mental health and addictions,” Swann said. “Otherwise, preventable tragedies like Lily’s death will continue to occur. ”

The Advocate’s report recommends creating a safe environment for children exposed to parental addictions. Specifically, greater resources for front-line workers so they can create effective support networks, such as extended family. It also recommends that government ensures these support networks have the knowledge required to intervene when a child’s welfare is in danger.

Swann, co-author of the Alberta Mental Health and Addictions Review released in February, agrees with the Child and Youth Advocate.

“The evidence is clear that community supports, prevention and early intervention have a huge impact on saving lives,” Swann said. “Mental health and addiction issues don’t just impact the sufferers directly, the damage done to families and communities is immense. We simply have to change the way these problems are dealt with.”


Dr. David Swann urges government not to delay funding for affordable housing by putting it to committee

Edmonton, AB (March 15, 2016): Dr. David Swann is concerned that the government might be planning to use an NDP Private Members’ Bill 202 to justify not putting any new money toward affordable housing in this year’s budget.     

“I’m concerned this is a stalling tactic,” said Swann. “The government’s first budget – for the 2015-16 fiscal year – included no new money to build or operate affordable housing units. Now, Bill 202 could provide a convenient excuse to delay affordable housing funding for another year while the government waits for oil prices to rebound.”

While Swann is not necessarily averse to a review, he notes that issues around housing and homelessness have already been studied and reported on extensively by Alberta’s seven municipal homeless management bodies and the Alberta Interagency Council on Homelessness. The solutions, he says, are largely known already, and he sees a real possibility of work being duplicated.